Scientists are mesmerized by the floating water bridge
but try not to think of the violent water flows
which can convert ambient heat (no other usable source of energy) into work, e.g. by rotating waterwheels, in violation of the second law of thermodynamics.
Water in an electric field automatically becomes a perpetual-motion machine of the second kind - this particular violation of the second law was noticed and immediately forgotten in 2002:
"A deviation from the second law of thermodynamics has been demonstrated experimentally for the first time. [...] To test the idea, the researchers put about 100 latex beads - each 6.3 µm across - into a WATER-FILLED CELL, which was placed on the stage of a microscope. The researchers focused a laser onto one of the beads, which induced a dipole moment in the bead and drew it towards the most intense region of the ELECTRIC FIELD in the laser beam." http://physicsworld.com/cws/article/news/2002/jul/16/small-systems-defy-second-law
Nature: "Second law broken. Researchers have shown for the first time that, on the level of thousands of atoms and molecules, fleeting energy increases violate the second law of thermodynamics. [...] They found that over periods of time less than two seconds, variations in the random thermal motion of water molecules occasionally gave individual beads a kick. This increased the beads' kinetic energy by a small but significant amount, in apparent violation of the second law." http://www.nature.com/news/2002/020722/full/news020722-2.html
Scientific American: "Second Law of Thermodynamics Violated. [...] ...the water molecules interacted with the bead in such a way that energy was transferred from the liquid to the bead. These additional kicks used the random thermal motion of the water to do the work of moving the bead, in effect yielding something for nothing. For periods of movement lasting less than two seconds, the bead was almost as likely to gain energy from the water as it was to add energy to the reservoir, the investigators say." https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/second-law-of-thermodynam/
George Orwell: "Crimestop means the faculty of stopping short, as though by instinct, at the threshold of any dangerous thought. It includes the power of not grasping analogies, of failing to perceive logical errors, of misunderstanding the simplest arguments if they are inimical to Ingsoc, and of being bored or repelled by any train of thought which is capable of leading in a heretical direction. Crimestop, in short, means protective stupidity."
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